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House Speaker John Boehner makes last-ditch bid to rally support.
Update: Late Thursday afternoon, House speaker John Boehner abruptly delayed a vote on his plan to raise the debt ceiling.
The U.S. House of Representatives was preparing to vote Thursday on a plan by Republican House Speaker John Boehner to raise the country's borrowing limit ahead of an August 2 deadline.
News agency Bloomberg said the plan, which has met with some opposition from within Boehner's own party, would raise the debt ceiling in a two-step process, while also cutting spending.
The vote could be delayed if Boehner cannot rely on getting the minimum 217 votes needed.
Speaking on The Laura Ingraham Show, Boehner described the plan "best opportunity we have to hold the president’s feet to the fire."
(Read more on GlobalPost: Boehner to GOP members: "Get your ass in line")
Late Wednesday night, 17 Republicans said they would oppose the measure, and five indicated they were considering opposing it.
President Barack Obama's Office of Management and Budget said it would recommend a veto, should the plan be passed.
Meanwhile the Senate, which is controlled by the Democrats, will be watching what happens before conducting its own vote.
The U.S. Treasury says it will default on its debt if the $14.3 trillion borrowing limit is not raised by the deadline. But in order to do this, Republicans are unwilling to consider tax increases on the wealthy, while Democrats are unwilling to cut too heavily into public spending.
These political divisions continued to weigh on financial markets Thursday, amid fears the U.S. could lose its AAA credit rating, hurting global markets.
Wall Street suffered its worst day in two months on Wednesday, in a session that was predicted to be volatile ahead of the House vote.
The Boehner plan is not expected to pass in the Senate, where Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada has his own debt-limit proposal.